Open Leadership

Key Idea

Open leadership rests on the idea that new technologies, especially social technologies, will usher in a new type of leadership. A new code is being built – one that emphasizes transparency rather than a rigid “need to know” mindset and features a culture of “online sharing” that looks nothing like your grandfather’s “word of mouth” approach. Leader beware: Unless the culture and habits of your organization changes, your digital strategy will fail.

Book to Read

Open Leadership: How Social Technology Can Transform the Way You Lead  
by Charlene Li (2010)

Quick Take from the Book  

According to Li, open-driven leadership creates four objectives:

  1. Removes friction (by removing barriers and access to information and people).
  2. Scales efforts (new initiatives can spread faster and wider).
  3. Enables a fast response (real-time feedback).
  4. Gains commitment (a way to win the hearts and minds of your employees and customers) .

Quote of Note  

"Open leadership is not about being warm, fuzzy, authentic, transparent, or “real.” It’s more than simply sharing anecdotes from your personal life or tidbits from professional meetings. Rather, it’s a mixture of mind-set, temperament, learned behaviors, and skills that build on and amplify good leadership skills. Leadership takes on a different dimension in a connected, networked world – that of being a catalyst for change both outside and inside the organization." — p. 164

Related Styles:  Boundary-spanning LeadershipComplexity Leadership

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